RIAA files appeal in Jammie Thomas case

The music industry's trade group has filed an appeal in its long-running copyright case against a Minnesota woman found liable for illegal file sharing.

The large record companies have filed an appeal in their long-running copyright case against Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a Minnesota woman who was found liable for illegal file sharing.

CBS

In court documents filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in St. Louis, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) says it is appealing several decisions made during the case, going back to 2008.

Last month, a federal court once again lowered the amount a jury ordered Thomas-Rasset to pay to compensate the RIAA for damages. Last year, Rasset was ordered to pay $62,500 for each of the 24 songs she was accused of uploading illegally to the Web. But U.S. District Court Judge Michael Davis in Minnesota lowered the sum to $2,250 per song and with that, instead of owing the music labels $1.5 million, Thomas-Rasset currently owes them $54,000.

According to the documents filed with the appeals court by the RIAA, the trade group that represents all four of the largest trade companies wants the judges to determine:

Whether the district court erred by concluding that making a copyrighted work available for download on an online file-sharing network is insufficient to constitute a 'distribution' under 106(3) of the Copyright Act, and therefore refusing to enjoin defendant from making plaintiffs' copyrighted sound recordings available to the public.

Whether the district court erred by concluding that it had committed an error in instructing the jury that making a copyrighted work available for download on a online file-sharing network constitutes a "distribution" under 1063 of the Copyright Act and therefore vacating the jury's verdict and ordering a new trial.

Whether the district court erred by holding that the jury's award of statutory damages for defendant's willful copyright infringement violated the due process clause even though it was well within the range of damages awards authorized by 504(c) of the Copyright Act.

More to come

 

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